Jacob Stockdale joins Hillsong leader in attacking Israel Folau for Biblical stance on sodomy

Ulster and Ireland rugby star Jacob Stockdale has again made some very disappointing comments for a professing Christian by condemning Australian rugby star Israel Folau for stating the Biblical position on homosexuality.

Stockdale, who is involved with Banbridge Road Presbyterian Church in Dromore, County Down and whose father is a Presbyterian prison chaplain, said Folau was “preaching all the wrong things about Christianity”.

This follows on from a previous interview Jacob Stockdale gave to the Presbyterian Herald, in which he stated that he went drinking with his team mates and outlined his opposition to the Biblical principle of separation, which you can read about by clicking here.

And he has now joined the leader of the utterly ungodly Hillsong Church movement, Brian Houston (pictured, below) in condemning Israel Folau for simply repeating what the Bible has to say.

Let us remember what Israel Folau said, or indeed posted on his Instagram page.

His post, which is pictured at the top of this article, stated:

WARNING: Drunks, Homosexuals, Adulterers, Liars, Fornicators, Thieves, Atheists, Idolaters – HELL AWAITS YOU. REPENT! ONLY JESUS SAVES.

This is taken from the following passage in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, which says: “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

So Israel Folau was simply repeating what the Bible says but Jacob Stockdale appears to be claiming to know better than God’s Word, saying Israel Folau is “preaching all the wrong things about Christianity”.

Does that mean Jacob Stockdale strokes that passage from his copy of the Bible?

The wrath and judgement of God is a crucial aspect of Christianity, just as is His love and mercy.

Were there no punishment for sin, then why would we need or desire God’s love or mercy?

Paul, in his first letter to the believers at Thessalonika, stated that Jesus had delivered those who were saved “from the wrath to come”.

Jesus spoke of “the wrath to come” in His time on earth (Matthew 3:7) and warned that we ought to “fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).

Is this what Jacob Stockdale considers to be “all the wrong things about Christianity”?

Jesus and the Apostle Paul both preached the judgment of God, yet Jacob Stockdale seems to be opposed to this.

It is very disappointing he could not side with Israel Folau, but instead sides with the LGBT agenda which is spreading like wildfire through our country.

This is what Jacob Stockdale said in an interview with the Irish Times: “From a religious point of view, it preaches all the wrong things about Christianity. It preaches God is a spiteful God, a hateful God. You are going to hell. You are going to burn in hell. Realistically, God is an all loving God. He’s a forgiving God.

“Going back to Israel Folau that’s the point he missed, that’s the point he didn’t talk about. As a Christian and rugby player it was very disappointing. For me Israel Folau wasn’t respectful of other people.

“As a Christian and a professional sports person you don’t want to divide people. You don’t want to alienate people.

“You want people to feel comfortable coming to watch you play rugby. You want people to feel comfortable coming to support you knowing why you believe and knowing what kind of person you are.”

There are a great many things we could highlight from those quotes and, to (hopefully!) prevent the article becoming too lengthy, we will address just some of it.

Saying that Israel Folau, by quoting the Bible, is preaching a “hateful” and “spiteful God”, is a very foolish thing to do.

Jacob Stockdale goes on to say it is hateful to say that people are going to hell and that God is an “all loving” and “forgiving God”.

Certainly God is a God of love, He is patient and He is willing and able to forgive us of our sins.

2 Peter 3:9 says: “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

But there are consequences for failing to repent of our sins.

Revelation 21:8 outlines this. It says: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Romans 6:23 reminds us that the “wages of sin is death” and Jesus said in Luke 13:3 that “except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish”.

We are all under a death sentence for sin and the only way to be saved from it is to place our faith and trust in Christ and repent of our sins.

This is the central message of the gospel, yet Jacob Stockdale seems to think it is wrong for Israel Folau to mention it.

He also unfairly and inaccurately claims that Israel Folau “didn’t talk about” God’s forgiveness. In the caption Israel Folau placed beside the post he shared, he said that “Jesus Christ loves you and is giving you time to turn away from your sin and come to him”.

It’s pretty clear that claim by Jacob Stockdale is wrong.

And he concludes by saying that you “don’t want to divide people” or “alienate” them.

Certainly it is not desirable to do that, but at what cost?

Do professing Christians, to save from offending the unsaved, refuse to tell them what the Bible says and the judgement God has in store if they don’t repent?

God forbid.

Paul, as he bid farewell to those in the church at Ephesus, said in Acts 20:26-27: “Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men . For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.”

Paul hadn’t just told people the nice bits of the love, mercy, lovingkindness and salvation of God, but he had preached the consequences of sin, he had preached the punishment of the unrepentant. In doing so, he had discharged his duty and the blood of the people of Ephesus was not on his hands.

He was a good watchman (see Ezekiel 33).

If Jacob Stockdale is refusing to tell others of the consequences of their sin so as not to offend or “alienate” them, then the same could not be said of him.

Jacob Stockdale’s idea of not dividing people is also an unscriptural one.

Jesus states this Himself in Matthew 10:34-35, which says: “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.”

Jacob Stockdale’s idea of not offending people is also an unscriptural one.

1 Peter 2:7-8 says: “Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient”.

As we have stated, we should not set out to offend people, but we “ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).

But it is not up to us if people will listen or not, if they will be offended or not, all we can do is discharge our duty and warn of God’s judgement.

Ezekiel 2:7 says: “And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious.”

Sadly, it would appear that Jacob Stockdale is not prepared to do this.

As we stated before, Jacob Stockdale is seen as a role model by many young Christians and is in a position where he could take an incredibly powerful stand for God.

It is most disappointing that he is instead criticising Israel Folau (whose church links we would have considerable reservations over but he is clearly right in this instance) for taking a stand on this key battleground in the drive by God-defiers and God-deniers to attack Christianity.

We would once again urge Jacob Stockdale in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to “consider your ways” (Haggai 1:5) and take what would prove to be a mighty stand for God.

And we would urge anyone reading this to take that same stand for God and speak out against that which is contrary to God and His Word and never be afraid to “declare all the counsel of God”.

2 Timothy 4:2: “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.”

Bangor Elim to give hero’s welcome to Pope performers Rend Collective

Acts 5:29: “Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.”

Amos 3:3: “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?”

The supposedly ‘Christian’ rock band, Rend Collective, who performed for the Pope when he visited Dublin last year, will be welcomed back as heroes to Bangor Elim next week as they perform three concerts at that church.

Rend Collective will be on stage at Bangor Elim for three consecutive nights from Tuesday, 21 to Thursday, 23 May.

Indeed, sadly such was the demand to see this Papal pandering band that initially there was to be just two concerts, but a third was added after the first two sold out. Tickets cost £20 each.

Religious compromise certainly can be financially profitable, it would appear.

It is being billed as a hometown show as Rend Collective was born out of Bangor Elim in 2002.

Let us remind readers of the truly disgraceful compromise carried out by Rend Collective as they seek to please man rather than God.

Last August, during the visit of the Pope, who blasphemously calls himself the Vicar of Christ on earth, to Dublin, the allegedly God-exalting Rend Collective gladly accepted an invitation to be part of the entertainment for the crowds as they gathered in Phoenix Park to celebrate the Papal Mass.

So they have openly compromised with the false religion of Popery.

Then, in September, in a discussion with a transgender individual, they appeared to say it was “a sad thing” that certain churches would not allow a transgender person to lead worship or preach.

So they have openly compromised with the utterly godless LGBT lobby.

They also made a very telling statement at that time, saying that “in an attempt to foster unity we try not to be selective in who we partner with under the banner of the gospel”.

Sadly, they certainly got that right!

And to drive home that ecumenical spirit, we revealed in February that this summer, Rend Collective will perform at supposedly ‘Christian’ summer camps, ran by brazen ecumenist Mike Pilavachi’s Soul Survivor church, at which the Roman Catholic Mass is celebrated.

So they will once more openly compromise with ecumenists and Romanism.

Does Bangor Elim think all of these antics are acceptable?

Does Bangor Elim believe they should be promoting a band, regardless of its links to their church, which repeatedly engages with the pagan, anti-Christian system of Rome and which compromises with the sodomite lobby?

Gary Beattie is the lead pastor of Bangor Elim and has been since 2002, which, perhaps coincidentally, is the same year Rend Collective formed.

So, does Gary Beattie think all of these antics are acceptable?

Does Gary Beattie believe Bangor Elim should be promoting a band, regardless of its links to their church, which repeatedly engages with the pagan, anti-Christian system of Rome and which compromises with the sodomite lobby?

The sad and disgraceful compromise of Rend Collective has already been brought to the attention of Bangor Elim but what have they done?

Rather than rectifying the situation by cancelling the two (at that time) scheduled concerts and publicly repudiating the God-dishonouring actions of Rend Collective, what did Bangor Elim do? They organised a third concert.

Like Pharoah in the days of Moses and like the children of Israel in the times of their disobedience and apostasy, Bangor Elim stiffened their necks, and not only continued in their error, but added to it.

This is great foolishness.

Proverbs 12:15 says: “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.”

Proverbs 17:10 says: “A reproof entereth more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool.”

Proverbs 26:11 says: “As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.”

Had Bangor Elim not been deaf to the calls to dissociate themselves with Rend Collective, this ecumenical, compromising, people pleasing rock band, they would have been wise.

As it is, they have made it clear they are happy to reject what God has to say, through His Word, on matters of ecumenism, Romanism and transgenderism.

We are told, in Ephesians 5:11 that we are to “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

Jude v 3 instructs us that we are to “earnestly contend for the faith”.

Yet here is Bangor Elim enthusiastically endorsing ecumenism by bringing in a band which seemingly, by their own admission, refuses to practice any form of spiritual discernment in whom they fellowship with.

We will also remind Bangor Elim, and Rend Collective, of what the Bible has to say regarding the teachings of the false religion of Romanism in the titles the Pope blasphemously takes upon himself.

The Pope calls himself the “Holy Father”, despite Jesus saying in Matthew 23:9: “And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.”

The Pope calls himself the “Pontiff”, meaning “bridge”, claiming he is a bridge between man and God, despite the Bible saying in 1 Timothy 2:5 that “there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus”.

The Pope calls himself the “Vicar of Christ on earth”, despite that role belonging to the Holy Ghost, as evidenced in John 14:26, which says: “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”

So the Pope blasphemes all three Persons of the Godhead, yet Bangor Elim is happy to welcome in Rend Collective, who have given credence to the Pope and his evil claims, as well as his church’s evil teachings, by performing at an event where the Pope was exalted and lifted up.

The notion of transgenderism is also clearly spoken of and rejected in God’s Word.

Genesis 1:27 says: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

Deuteronomy 22:5: “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”

The very notion, like that of sodomy, is an “abomination” (Leviticus 18:22) in the eyes of God, yet Rend Collective said, in response to the previously referred to Twitter comments by a transgender individual that they wouldn’t be allowed to lead or preach in certain churches, that it was “very sad”.

What is “very sad” and indeed downright dangerous, is the influence held by Rend Collective over so many young (in particular) professing Christians.

The same minds which think it is “very sad” those whose lifestyle choices God describes as an “abomination” cannot lead or preach in some churches are conceiving the lyrics which many Christians, perhaps brothers and sisters, sons and daughters or grandchildren of readers, are singing away merrily in their spare time.

The same minds which think it is absolutely fine to give credence to the blasphemous claims and teachings of the Pope of Rome are conceiving the lyrics which are influencing the minds and Christian walks of brothers and sisters, sons and daughters or grandchildren of readers.

What a sad and, as we say, dangerous situation this is.

James 4:4: “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”

It is difficult to imagine that everyone who attends Bangor Elim would concur with Rend Collective’s assessment that it is “very sad” that sodomites and transgender people cannot lead and preach in certain churches, their own included.

It is difficult to imagine that everyone who attends Bangor Elim would be content with religious association with the blasphemies of Rome.

We would encourage anyone who attends Bangor Elim who is reading this to make their voice heard loud and clear in opposition to this fearful compromise being carried out by Rend Collective and by their church.

And we would also encourage anyone reading this who knows anyone involved with Bangor Elim or knows anyone who listens to Rend Collective’s music to share this article with them and warn them against attending or supporting these concerts.

We ought to be separated from error, but Rend Collective have brazenly ignored the Scriptural call to do just that, but do not let yourself be caught up in both their and Bangor Elim’s disobedience to God.

2 Corinthians 6:14-18: “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”

Isaiah 58:1: “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.”

DUP sinks still further with lesbian council candidate

Romans 1:21-27: “Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”

Matthew 19:4-6: “And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”

The Bible is crystal clear on homosexuality, it is branded an “abomination” (Leviticus 18:22), “vile” and “against nature” (Romans 1:26).

It is the chief sin which brought God’s judgment down on Sodom and Gomorrah.

Jude 1:7: “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

It is contrary to the founding principles and natural order of this world ordained by God.

Genesis 2:24: “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.”

The DUP was founded by the late Rev Ian Paisley, who was also founder of the Free Presbyterian Church, and the party was at one time a fearsome and uncompromising voice for the Word of God.

Indeed, in the early 1980s it was Ian Paisley and the DUP which campaigned to ‘Save Ulster From Sodomy’.

Sadly, that battle was lost as that which God called an “abomination” was legalised. Today, that which God called an “abomination” is exalted.

It is paraded through our city streets, it is advocated by much of the movers and shakers (or so they like to think of themselves) in our country, and it seeks to exert total dominance in our society, so much so that a Christian bakery was taken to court for refusing to ice a cake bearing a message exalting such an “abomination”.

Praise God the McArthur family, who own Asher’s Bakery, was finally vindicated by the UK Supreme Court but it is chilling to think it got that far and surely the whole episode would be enough to make other Christians reluctant to rock the sodomite boat in future.

To be fair to the DUP, they are the only reason, politically speaking, that sodomite marriage and, for that matter, the murder of innocent unborn children, hasn’t been foisted on Northern Ireland.

However, as the DUP nominates its first openly homosexual council candidate, we can see very clearly how far this party has fallen.

Alison Bennington is a lesbian and a businesswoman and she has been chosen by party officials to contest the Glengormley Urban area for Antrim and Newtownabbey Council at next week’s election.

Now, one might ask why she is contesting a seat for a party which still opposes, publicly at least, sodomite marriage.

However, that is to miss the point.

The real question is why on earth the DUP would select a lesbian candidate to run for them and recommend her to the people of Glengormley and, by extension, the people of Ulster.

Such a situation would have been inconceivable even a short time ago.

However, the seeds of this compromise with sin have steadily been sown over the past number of years.

From governing Stormont departments which were administering money to sodomite groups to standing back and allowing sodomite pardons to be brought into Northern Ireland, there has been a clear softening of the party’s attitude to sodomy.

Indeed, within weeks of the DUP sitting back and allowing a Bill through Stormont saying that anyone convicted of this grave breach of God’s law had been wrongly treated (and in the process repudiating their own party’s previous stance against legalising sodomy) the Stormont executive had collapsed, and is yet to return almost two and a half years later.

Do we not see God’s hand of Providence in that?

However, unabashed, party leader Arlene Foster went on a charm offensive last year by cosying up with Islam, attending a GAA match on a Sunday and then addressing an event celebrating sodomites at Stormont.

Further to that, a vile drag queen event was held at Stormont with the support of one of the party’s MLAs, Paula Bradley.

And late last year Arlene Foster tweeted her congratulations to the lesbian Scottish Conservative Party leader Ruth Davidson after she gave birth to a child which she will raise alongside her lesbian partner.

And now the DUP, a party founded upon fundamentalist Christian principles, guided by the authority of God’s Word, is recommending that its supporters, many of whom are Christians, vote for someone living in open defiance of His Word.

What a sad situation that is.

So far the only public voice of dissent has been from Jim Wells, MLA for South Down.

He said: “The party is making a very clear statement here by this selection and it fundamentally undermines the values and traditions of the party.”

Will other Christians in the DUP speak out against it? The signs so far are not positive, in fact surely enough time has already passed for them to do so.

If the DUP think this will be enough to placate the sodomite agenda then they are sadly mistaken.

Just look at the responses to their move.

A Cai Wilshaw of the LGBT website Pink News, said he hoped this move was only the beginning.

He said: “While it is true this is a positive development, I hope this is only the first step in a broader change in the party’s outlook on equal rights for all in the north of Ireland.”

A Gavin Boyd of the Rainbow Project was similarly minded.

He said: “Selecting an LGBT candidate says nothing about whether the DUP has changed from being openly hostile to LGBT people, our families and our rights.

“When the party begins to make amends for the way it has treated our community we will hold out the hand of friendship as we always have.”

So this isn’t enough for the advocates of sodomy and nothing will be until the DUP fall prostrate at the altar of sodomy, as Nebuchadnezzar required Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to fall before the idol he had set up.

Indeed, this spirit is reminiscent of that ascribed to Nebuchadnezzar in the prophecy of Habakkuk.

The Bible says in Habakkuk 2:5: “Yea also, because he transgresseth by wine, he is a proud man, neither keepeth at home, who enlargeth his desire as hell, and is as death, and cannot be satisfied, but gathereth unto him all nations, and heapeth unto him all people.”

Nebuchadnezzar was never satisfied with what he had, he had an insatiable appetite for more and this is the case with the LGBT agenda, nothing but complete submission will suffice.

However, no matter what Daniel’s friends were threatened with and no matter what dire consequences were promised for their refusal to betray God, they stood firm.

They were greatly rewarded as God miraculously saved them from the fiery furnace.

How can the DUP expect God to be pleased with them when they recommend someone living brazenly contrary to His Word?

1 Samuel 2:30 warns of this. It says: “…them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.”

Standing firm for God is a reward in itself as we know we are doing that which is right, but not only that, God will reward us for doing so.

There can be no blessing for the DUP when they run a candidate who lives in a way utterly at odds with the Bible.

Boozing and playing on a Sunday – the disappointing witness of Ireland rugby star Jacob Stockdale

Standards in the professing church have unquestionably dropped, and indeed have done significantly, in the past number of decades.

Be it the dress adopted by those attending church, the worldly pursuits of professing Christians or even the lowering in the regard for and fear of God, there can really be little argument that the separation between the world and the professing church has greatly diminished.

And to that end, it was with disappointment we read of the comments from Ireland rugby star Jacob Stockdale from an interview in the Presbyterian Herald, some of which was reproduced in the Belfast Telegraph.

Not only was the interview published just after he had played in a Six Nations match against Italy on the Lord’s Day, he also spoke of how he joins his team mates as they get their boozy nights out up and running, even joining in on the consumption of stupefying alcohol.

Further to that, he articulated his opposition to the Scriptural position of separation from sin.

We reaffirm our disappointment with his comments, which is all the more disappointing given the prominent position Jacob Stockdale occupies and the tremendous influence for good he could be were he to take a firm stand.

Rugby is Jacob Stockdale’s occupation and for him to have taken the field last Sunday is a clear breach of the Fourth Commandment.

This is outlined in Exodus 20:8-11, which says: “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.”

There are those who sadly believe today that the Ten Commandments no longer apply, yet this runs contrary to the teaching of Jesus.

Such people quite often use the following passage to justify ignoring the Ten Commandments.

Matthew 22:37-40: “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

Of course, even this passage clearly demonstrates that such a contention is nonsense, as the closing verse says that those two commandments encapsulate the Ten Commandments.

But we are told in Luke that these two commandments which many modern Christians seem to think are the only rules to govern their lives are “written in the law” and therefore clearly these two commandments are a summary of the Ten Commandments.

Luke 10:25-28 says: “And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.”

That being the case, it is clear that the Fourth Commandment is still very much applicable.

Jacob Stockdale’s decision, sadly, stands in stark contrast to that of former Scotland rugby player Euan Murray, who came to the realisation that playing on a Sunday was wrong, saying he didn’t believe in “pick ‘n’ mix Christianity”.

In an interview from 2009, Euan Murray said: “It’s basically all or nothing, following Jesus. I don’t believe in pick ‘n’ mix Christianity. I believe the Bible is the word of God, so who am I to ignore something from it?

“I might as well tear out that page then keep tearing out pages as and when it suits me. If I started out like that there would soon be nothing left.”

The views of Euan Murray are absolutely commendable and we would certainly encourage Jacob Stockdale to follow his lead. It is surely highly probable Euan Murray would be happy to advise Jacob Stockdale on the matter.

And the other truly disheartening aspect of this interview given to the Presbyterian Herald was his discussion of his drinking with his team mates, outlining his rejection of separation from sin.

Jacob Stockdale said he is a “firm believer that you can’t completely detach yourself from that culture because it makes it hard to socialise, to interact with your team-mates”.

He continued: “At the end of the day, the guys that I play with are my really close friends, whether they’re Christians or not.

“When you have team socials where there is a lot of drinking involved, you have to balance it; go, maybe have a few drinks but know when to stop drinking and be smart about it in that sense.

“I think it’s detrimental not to go to team socials and to distance yourself from your teammates and colleagues – at the end of the day you’re here to be an evangelist and separating yourself from others doesn’t help.”

Sadly, Jacob Stockdale thinks it is permissible to join in on the worldly activities of his ungodly teammates and it is “detrimental” to be separated from sin.

James 4:4 reminds us that this is a very wrong position to adopt. It says: “… know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”

The attitude of Jacob Stockdale is actually putting him at “enmity with God”.

What a sad situation that is.

The perils of alcohol consumption are so clearly and wisely summed up by Solomon.

He says, under the inspiration of God, in Proverbs 23:29-35: “Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things. Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I will seek it yet again.”

What a folly it is to join in on such a worldly action. We would urge Jacob Stockdale to reconsider his approach to such matters.

It is also sad that the Presbyterian Herald is advertising Jacob Stockdale and his witness as commendable to its readers and to its members

Jacob Stockdale is a major figure, and is considered among the very finest players in the entire world, something which makes him a role model to many young Christians and aspiring rugby players.

The Presbyterian Church should be playing no part in promoting working on a Sunday and joining with the world in its ungodly activities.

According to the report, Jacob Stockdale is linked with the “Banbridge Road Presbyterian Church”, which would appear to be located in Dromore, County Down.

This church should be taking a stand against the actions and comments of Jacob Stockdale, but it does not appear that is the case.

Sadly, this is an example of the decline in the stand of the professing church in Ulster.

The story of Jacob Stockdale, whose rugby exploits will matter not one jot in eternity, will sadly be one of missed opportunity if he continues to forget the sabbath day to keep it holy and indulge in imbibing alcohol so as to fit in with his ungodly teammates.

We urge Jacob Stockdale, in the precious name of our Lord and Saviour, to “consider your ways” (Haggai 1:5) and take what would prove to be a mighty stand for God.

Matthew 5:16: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

East Belfast Mission and Rev Andrew Irvine give themselves over to Rome

Jeremiah 6:13-16: “For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord. Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.”

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is a reprehensible event, as it seeks to overthrow vital doctrinal differences in the name of soppy ‘unity’.

Never mind the fact that Rome denies the precious truth of salvation by faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9), or that it blasphemously offers up Christ as a sacrifice at its Mass, or the blasphemous titles taken upon himself by the Pope, or Rome’s many other false teachings and claims.

So long as we stand together and pontificate about how lovely it would be to live together in peace and harmony, and without any of that frightful earnest contending for the faith, then won’t everything just be fine and dandy?

The attitude of the ecumenist is to ignore or shun doctrinal differences (although in many cases it could be because they don’t actually hold particularly strongly to any doctrines to differ from others on) for the sake of the utterly vital ‘unity’, even though it is nothing other than a shabby pretence.

To allow others to continue in error and refuse to try to correct them, out of a love for their never-dying soul, is seen as praiseworthy and noble.

And one such ever so worthy character who helped spread ecumenical deceit during that week long festival of mean compromise is Rev Andrew Irvine (pictured, top), Methodist minister and Chief Executive of the East Belfast Mission, itself ran by the Methodist Church.

A former big shot on Belfast City Council, Rev Andrew Irvine has been brought on board at the East Belfast Mission to help boost its income.

And on Wednesday, 23 January, Rev Andrew Irvine engaged in his mean ecumenical compromise by preaching at a Week of Prayer for Christian Unity service in a Romanist chapel in Lurgan in County Armagh.

Rev Andrew Irvine was the speaker in the service in St Paul’s Roman Catholic church in the town.

How exactly such compromise can be justified is frankly remarkable.

Did Rev Andrew Irvine tell those in attendance that the Romish lie of works based salvation will lead any who believe it to hell?

Did Rev Andrew Irvine tell them that Purgatory is nothing but a Romish creation, a fictitious venue used largely to extract more money from its deluded adherents?

Did Rev Andrew Irvine blast the disgraceful Papist lie of offering prayers to Mary and to long dead so-called ‘saints’?

What do you think?

Had Rev Andrew Irvine said any of those things he’d have been out on his ear so quickly it would have made his head spin.

Instead, he chooses to say soft things that will offend nobody and leave those in attendance with a warm, fuzzy feeling.

The theme of this year’s Week of Christian Unity was ‘Justice’.

Not God’s justice of course, the ecumenist and apostate doesn’t like God’s justice.

Rather it is about what is known as ‘social justice’, meaning it is very easy territory for anyone to cover and certainly would allow those in attendance to leave with that warm, fuzzy feeling so valued in churches which have rejected Christ.

After all, who could disagree that it would be nice if everybody was treated fairly?

Saying things that please people, rather than telling them they are on their way to a lost eternity in hell if they don’t repent of their sins, is symptomatic of the false prophets the whole way down through history.

This was very prevalent in the days of Jeremiah and Ezekiel.

Jeremiah was outright contradicted in his prophesies of destruction for Jerusalem by Hananiah, who prophesied from the imagination of his own heart rather than according to God’s Word.

Jeremiah 28:1-4 says: “And it came to pass the same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, and in the fifth month, that Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet, which was of Gibeon, spake unto me in the house of the Lord, in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying, Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saying, I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon. Within two full years will I bring again into this place all the vessels of the Lord’s house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place, and carried them to Babylon: And I will bring again to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, with all the captives of Judah, that went into Babylon, saith the Lord: for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.”

That certainly was a people-pleasing message from Hananiah.

Jeremiah responded in verse 9, saying: “…when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him.”

What Jeremiah was saying was that time would prove who was telling the truth.

How did events transpire? Jeremiah 39 has the answer.

Jeremiah 39:1-9 says: “In the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the tenth month, came Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon and all his army against Jerusalem, and they besieged it. And in the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month, the ninth day of the month, the city was broken up. And all the princes of the king of Babylon came in, and sat in the middle gate, even Nergal-sharezer, Samgar-nebo, Sarsechim, Rab-saris, Nergal-sharezer, Rab-mag, with all the residue of the princes of the king of Babylon. And it came to pass, that when Zedekiah the king of Judah saw them, and all the men of war, then they fled, and went forth out of the city by night, by the way of the king’s garden, by the gate betwixt the two walls: and he went out the way of the plain. But the Chaldeans’ army pursued after them, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho: and when they had taken him, they brought him up to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath, where he gave judgment upon him. Then the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah in Riblah before his eyes: also the king of Babylon slew all the nobles of Judah. Moreover he put out Zedekiah’s eyes, and bound him with chains, to carry him to Babylon. And the Chaldeans burned the king’s house, and the houses of the people, with fire, and brake down the walls of Jerusalem. Then Nebuzar-adan the captain of the guard carried away captive into Babylon the remnant of the people that remained in the city, and those that fell away, that fell to him, with the rest of the people that remained.”

Jeremiah had urged King Zedekiah to negotiate a truce with Babylon, Hananiah the false prophet claimed God had told him that the Lord would “break the yoke of the king of Babylon”.

Which message was more popular? Hananiah’s. Which message was of God? Jeremiah’s.

And so it is even to this day, the Word of God continues to be unpopular with the world at large, and Rev Andrew Irvine is following in the footsteps of Hananiah.

He is, in the words given to the prophet Isaiah by God, saying the “smooth things”.

Isaiah 30:9-10: “That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord: Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:”

Ecumenical events are nothing other than deceits and we ought to stay well clear of any such event.

Likewise, any supposedly Protestant minister engaging in such is guilty of taking part in the deception.

It is unsurprising to see Rev Andrew Irvine taking this approach when you consider who is his boss, as it were, in the East Belfast Mission, Rev Brian Anderson (pictured, below), the President of the Irish Council of Churches.

On the East Belfast Mission’s own website, the Irish Council of Churches is called the “main ecumenical body in Ireland”, showing very clearly how the East Belfast Mission is avowedly tied up with Rome.

Let us be determined to oppose all form of ecumenical meetings and be unafraid to stand up against any who are eager to betray their Protestant heritage by mingling with the errors of Rome.

Ephesians 5:11: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

Alpha Course conference and Nicky Gumbel celebrate Papal Mass

The Alpha Course has for some years now been a favoured method by which many churches seek to attract in new people.

‘That’s fantastic’, some might say. ‘Who wouldn’t want to see churches growing and attracting in new people?’

The problem, of course, is that the Alpha Course, while offering much that is perfectly orthodox, thus enticing the unsuspecting, is also contaminated with a significant amount of leaven.

And, as we are told in Galatians 5:9: “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”

What is that leaven? Well, it very much relies on emotionialism and puts an over emphasis on the Holy Spirit to the detriment of focusing on the blood of Jesus Christ, which alone can atone for sin.

This is a common feature of much of the charismatic movement and the Alpha Course’s leader, Nicky Gumbel (pictured, top), falls very much into the charismatic category.

A 1994 Time Magazine article entitled “Laughing for the Lord” says:

“It’s Sunday evening in London’s fashionable Knightsbridge neighborhood. Though pathetically tiny flocks of Londoners attend many Anglican services, Holy Trinity Brompton has a standing-room-only turnout of 1500. After the usual Scripture readings, prayers and singing, the chairs are cleared away. Curate Nicky Gumbel prays that the Holy Spirit will come upon the congregation. Soon a woman begins laughing. Others gradually join her with hearty belly laughs. A young worshipper falls to the floor, hands twitching. Another falls, then another and another. Within half an hour there are bodies everywhere as supplicants sob, shake, roar like lions, and strangest of all laugh uncontrollably. This frenzied display has become known as the ‘laughing revival’ or ‘Toronto Blessing’. After first appearing at Holy Trinity only last May, laughing revivals have been reported in Anglican parishes from Manchester to York to Brighton.”

Does that sound much like true worship of the almighty, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent God?

How can roaring like a lion and laughing like a hyena be in any way pleasing to God? Where is such nonsense found in the Bible?

The answer of course is that it is not found in the Bible.

Nicky Gumbel would claim this was a sign of the Holy Spirit coming upon his congregation.

However, any look at the Bible would see that those who were filled with the Holy Spirit acted in a manner so far removed from laughing like a hyena and roaring like a lion that to even make the comparison is rendered blatantly ludicrous.

Acts 13:6-12: “And when they had gone through the isle unto Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Bar-jesus: Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God. But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith. Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord? And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand. Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.”

Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, reproved the worker of iniquity and his expounding of doctrine led to the conversion of Sergius Paulus. No mention of him rolling on the floor like an eejit.

Acts 11:24: “For he was a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith: and much people was added unto the Lord.”

This passage speaks of Barnabas, who was “full of the Holy Ghost”. Nowhere is he recorded as being in some sort of trance like state. His infilling of the Holy Ghost was demonstrated through his faith.

Exodus 31:1-3: “And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah: And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship”.

How was the infilling of the Holy Spirit of Bezaleel, who played a key role in the construction of the tabernacle, manifested? Through his wisdom, understanding, knowledge and workmanship. None of these are consistent with laughing uncontrollably while rolling around the floor and roaring like a lion.

And given the unholy nature of this charismatic campaign waged by Nicky Gumbel and the practices and he behaviours he espouses, it should make us very wary indeed of the Alpha Course.

Sadly, it has gained much ground and has elevated Nicky Gumbel to essentially the position of the Pope of what is known as the emerging church, the non-denominational, charismatic, easy-believist fellowship type churches which have sprung up in the past 25 years, with the Emmanuel Church in the Craigavon area and Causeway Coast Vineyard Church two of the most prominent examples in our land.

Each year, Alpha hosts a leadership conference and the most recent one, which took place last May but whose speakers we have only recently became aware of, included a lengthy, fawning interview with a Roman Catholic cardinal.

Cardinal Luis Tagle is the most senior Roman Catholic churchman in the Philippines, a devoutly Roman Catholic country.

And a major theme of the saccharine interview was a Papal Mass, at which 6 million poor deluded people were in attendance, which Cardinal Luis Tagle organised.

He received a warm round of applause from the congregation in attendance for enabling so many people to be misled by “that Antichrist”, the Pope.

This is how Nicky Gumbel introduced that practitioner of Papist priestcraft to the audience: “Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle is Archbishop of Manila in the Philippines, where there are 82 million Catholics. He serves as president of Caritas International, the Catholic relief organisation, which is the largest charity in the world. He is president of the Catholic Biblical Federation, which operates in 126 countries around the world. In January 2015, he hosted Pope Francis’ visit to the Philippines which included the fourth largest ever gathering of people in history, when 6 million people gathered in a Papal Mass. We are very honoured to have him here, would you give a warm welcome to Cardinal Tagle.”

Cue much whooping and cheering and clapping from the audience.

We are reminded of 2 John 1:10-11, which says: “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.”

It is an appalling situation.

The love-in of an interview saw the perma-smirking Nicky Gumbel gush over the wonderful skills of this incredibly senior emissary of Papal deceit.

And such sycophancy towards a representative of the evil Romanist system has the very clear and obvious effect of making the dupes in attendance believe that Rome is not so bad and the Pope is someone to at least be faintly admired, rather than treated with revulsion.

Nicky Gumbel then asked Cardinal Luis Tagle about the spiritual disciplines he follows, and Cardinal Luis Tagle revealed he is a follower of the ‘Examen’, the meditative prayer ritual created by the Jesuit founder and leader of the Counter Reformation, Ignatius of Loyola.

Interestingly, it is also the same ritualistic spiritual practice which was disgracefully espoused by Emmanuel Church leader Alain Emerson at a service he led there back in November.

Discussing the spiritual disciplines he follows, Cardinal Luis Tagle says: “I have learned from my seminary mentors, who are Jesuit priests, to do the examination of consciousness.”

That sounds very much like meditation, doesn’t it? Also, Cardinal Luis Tagle is very open about his influences from the Jesuits, the order which led the Counter Reformation in which untold numbers of Protestants were murdered for defending the doctrine of salvation by faith alone in Christ alone.

Nicky Gumbel, as the minister of Holy Trinity Brompton, an Anglican Church, would know this, but he has clearly decided to ignore it and reject that knowledge which would make any minister worth their salt put clear water between them and Rome.

And it makes his response all the more appalling and reprehensible.

He says: “Explain that for us who haven’t had the benefit.”

Nicky Gumbel chooses to encourage an emissary of Papal deceit to spread false practices, holding him up as someone to follow.

This is the action of the man behind the Alpha Course and we would encourage anyone who attends a church which runs the Alpha Course or advocates it to challenge them on why they are running it.

We would certainly implore you not to submit yourself to this course or any who promote it.

Let us be separate from all such error and manifestations of compromise with the lies of Rome.

2 Corinthians 6:17: ‘Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you”.

Evangelical Alliance document suggests providing “trans” accessible toilets in church

The ongoing madness engulfing the western world in relation to matters of gender has begun to infect the church, and the Evangelical Alliance has apparently made a concession to this ungodly movement.

In a document called ‘Transformed’, which was written by Peter Lynas, he writes that “providing toilets that are clearly accessible to trans people will be an important part of the welcome provided by churches and charities”.

This would certainly seem to be a recommendation that churches make moves to tolerate the so-called gender choices made by people who make up what is known as the “trans community”.

And this recommendation would fly in the face of what the Bible has to say regarding gender, which is a foundational feature of the world.

Genesis 1:27: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

Jesus reaffirmed this in Matthew 19:4 when speaking to the Pharisees. He said: “And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female”.

Sadly, this suggestion from Peter Lynas and the Evangelical Alliance would appear to be a winking at sin, a toleration of that which is condemned by God and indeed to do it within the church, thus compounding the matter further.

2 John 1:11 speaks of false teachers by saying that “he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds”.

This can apply to various aspects of our lives and, while it may be claimed those pushing a transgender ideology are not being wished “God speed”, there is certainly an enabling to live an alternative lifestyle inside the church which is nowhere accepted as being proper in the Bible.

This is demonstrated in a practical manner within the church in the letter to the church in Ephesus in Revelation 2:2.

It says: “I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars”.

God commended the Ephesians for “not bear[ing] them which are evil”.

God also says this in Deuteronomy 22:5: “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”

This can clearly be applied to the notion of transgenderism, and the word “abomination” can also be translated as “detestable”, showing how God views such.

And this helps demonstrate why making changes to your church, conforming it to the world, is a grave error and something the Evangelical Alliance ought not to be promoting.

The document by the Evangelical Alliance appears to be a pastoral guide to churches dealing with those experiencing what they term “gender dysphoria”, where people believe their physical sex doesn’t match up with the gender with which they identify.

It strives to tread a middle line between very softly saying that the Bible is opposed to the notion of transgenderism, but without ever outright condemning such notions as sinful.

The document instead uses very general terms such as this, in the conclusions section: “The church must seek out clarity in this difficult area. Whilst we seek to support those struggling with gender dysphoria, we can resist and oppose forms of transgender ideology which offer alternative, radically secular ideas about what it means to be human.

“The Bible has much to say about what it is to be human, about sex and gender, about the body and about life in a fallen world. Redemption, through life in Christ, brings hope for our hearts, mind and bodies, all of which have been affected by the fall and by ongoing sin. But, the church must be careful to respond pastorally to individuals, whilst recognising the challenges and complexities surrounding transgender.”

The first sentence, which says the church “must seek out clarity” really doesn’t mean anything. Clarity about what?

Then it says about opposing “forms of transgender ideology, which offer different, radically secular ideas”. Does this mean some forms of transgender ideology which are perhaps not classified as “radically secular” are permissible, or can be worked alongside or with?

There is far from a clear message given out here.

Then the generality comes in, talking about how the entire world is fallen, which tends to create an air of equivocation.

Of course, the whole world is fallen, we are all wretched sinners fit only for hell (Jeremiah 17:9), but this does not mean a softer view can be had of any particular sin because of this.

James 4:17 says: “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.”

Because we know something is a sin, but also accept we are sinners ourselves, does not mean we should try to ignore or minimise sin or compare one sin with another.

Everyone obviously commits sin and all sin must be condemned but when a particular way of identifying your being is something which contradicts God’s Word and His natural order, this demonstrates a clear decision to live in a manner contrary to God’s Word.

We would call on Peter Lynas and the Evangelical Alliance to rip up their paper and start again, instead outlining why the Bible condemns variance from God’s established order and explaining the means of salvation which will deliver from such sin.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with striving to be compassionate, in fact we ought to be – look at the compassion of Jesus when he looked out at the crowds who were in need of salvation or when he wept over the condemnation of Jerusalem – but we cannot surrender or play down God’s Word in order to prevent someone from being angered by having their sin placed in the light of the Bible.

Jude 1:22-23: “And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.”